DMA encourages responsible environmental practices

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The Direct Marketing Association's board of directors has called on its members to implement better environmental practices in areas of paper procurement and use, list hygiene and data management, mail design and production, packaging, recycling and pollution reduction.

The DMA is encouraging paper suppliers to increase wood purchases from recognized forest certification programs, implement sustainable forestry practices, and document that they do not produce paper from illegally harvested or stolen wood.

The organization also asks that members evaluate paper used for marketing pieces, product packaging and internal consumption to identify opportunities for increased environmental attributes.

As for list-hygiene and data management, the DMA asks that members maintain in-house do-not-market lists for prospects and customers who do not wish to receive future solicitations.

To maintain "clean" mailing lists, member should use USPS or commercial equivalent files where applicable for ZIP code correction; address standardization, USPS products such as National Change of Address, Address Element Correction. Delivery Sequence File, and Address Correction Requested.

The DMA asks that members apply predictive models or Recency Frequency Monetary segmentation; review periodically direct mail and direct marketing packages, test and downsize; test and use production methods that reduce print order overruns, waste allowances and in-process waste; and encourage packaging suppliers to submit alternate solutions for environmentally preferable packaging, in addition to quoting prices on approved or existing specifications.

To encourage environmental responsibility, the DMA asks that members p urchase office papers, packing and packaging materials made from recycled materials with post-consumer content.

To save paper, integrating the use of electronic communications - e-mail, Web and intranets - for external and internal communications may be helpful.

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